After a water main break occurred near Bird Library Sunday afternoon, construction efforts to resolve the issue will start around 6 a.m. Monday. While no buildings will be impacted by the efforts to repair the break, there will be both construction…
Million Milestone: Barnes Center at The Arch Reaches One Millionth Recreation Visitor
Early this fall, the Barnes Center at The Arch welcomed its millionth visitor to the recreation and fitness areas. Ellie Allen, a first-year student in the College of Arts and Sciences, was the proud recipient of the honor and was gifted with a complimentary swag bag to mark the occasion.
“When I received the email telling me I was the one-millionth visitor to Barnes, I couldn’t believe it; I literally thought it was a scam email,” she said. “I thought it was really cool because the services at the Barnes Center had been among the reasons I chose to attend Syracuse.”
Matthew Hackett, director of recreation at the Barnes Center, emphasized the importance of the milestone. “The Barnes Center recreation staff is very excited to have reached one million patrons served within just our fitness and recreation center,” he says. “We strive to provide a fun, safe, inclusive and welcoming environment for the entire campus community.”
Since its official opening in September 2019, the Barnes Center has promoted an integrated, holistic approach to health and wellness across the student experience. Mirroring this across Barnes Center teams of Health Care, Counseling and Health Promotion and through its recreational facilities by combining physical, mental, social and spiritual well-being. While the Barnes Center’s gym is the most visible of such facilities, there is a multifaceted programming network beneath the surface.
Ranging across student interests, experiences and goals, qualified professionals encourage students to be in the driver’s seat of discovering wellness through recreation. Yoga, spin and total body training group fitness classes are available at no charge for students and provide a sense of community. Recently, the Barnes Center has introduced its Lift and EmpoWer: Women on Weights series, designed to promote inclusivity and confidence in the weight room. In addition, recreation hosts a professional-grade esports room, complete with various PCs and consoles, that also offers students a place to connect.
While the Barnes Center expected to meet this milestone sooner, like all recreation and fitness centers, the pandemic presented a unique and unprecedented challenge in providing resources to large numbers of visitors. Still, the Barnes Center progressed during its formative years to adapt during the pandemic, providing virtual fitness classes and adjusting in-person activities.
“The Barnes Center enacted a number of safety measures and cleaning protocols that limited capacity during COVID restrictions to keep patrons safe, but also allowed us to keep the facilities open,” says Hackett. “Now, the Barnes Center is back to full capacity operations and serving thousands of students daily.”
For Allen, the Barnes Center’s resources were an integral transition piece to Syracuse: “I made my first friends on the LOOP Pre-Welcome trip run through Barnes. I’ve also had a ton of fun going on other outdoor adventure trips this semester,” she says. “Another thing I really like at Barnes is the pool because swimming is a really nice way for me to de-stress.”
The Barnes Center’s millionth visitor to the fitness and recreation center is proof of the valuable resources it brings to the Syracuse University campus and its commitment to increasing the quality of life for its visitors. For Hackett, he and his recreation team are excited to reach their two-millionth milestone.
“Our recreation team will continue to grow and expand programs and services and adapt to emerging student wellness needs as we look forward to welcoming even more visitors into the Barnes Center this year,” he says.
The campus community is encouraged to explore a variety of recreation offerings on the Barnes Center at The Arch website and Wellness Portal, by calling 315.443.8000 and visiting the Guest Services Desk in-person.
Story by Eden Stratton ’24